School of Thought
| Image Notes
| Artist's Notes
School of Thought (p.64) may evoke Magritte, but Deem says that it is pure autobiography. "I was making a painting of a plain Indiana schoolroom and suddenly the sky came in, and I made up these clouds, this school of thought or dreams. That is me, in my schoolroom. I can even tell you where I sat. It was in this schoolroom that poetry, magic, sex -- everything -- developed in this quiet and inexpressible way." (Introduction to George Deem, Art School, 2005, by Irene McManus, p. 1).
In Everybody's Schoolroom (1994) the landscape whose clouds drift into the space of the schoolroom is a generic image of a landscape, not a particular landscape. It is in fact a Russian landscape, by the painter Ivan Shishkin.Summer School (1993) is another painting of a schoolroom opening into the world outside. The door and the windows are open to a summer day. In these paintings, school is a place in which to dream the long dreams of childhood. School of Thought (1985) might be called "school of wool-gathering," our English phrase to describe idle daydreaming. Idleness and daydreaming are not negative qualities for me, as I think is clear in these paintings. They are for me not only qualities of childhood and youth but are essential to learning at any time in life.(George Deem, letter to Helga Wilson, Nyborg Gymnasium, February 17, 1998)
Evansville Museum of Arts and Science, Evansville, Indiana